Yum Kax (Yoom Kosh) the Mayan Corn God
Peabody Museum, Harvard University
I may have mentioned once or three times that I write ‘quick-read’ fiction for young teens who are not too keen on reading. For those of us who cannot imagine ever being without a book, it is often hard to understand why some people struggle to ever pick one up.
The thickness can deter some doubtful readers. Pages dense with text also intimidate. Ransom Publishing thus produce slim readers with plenty of white space on the page. More importantly, perhaps, for teen readers, they are now also published in various e-book formats including Amazon Kindle, and e-pub and pdf versions at Hive.
The stories in the Shades 2.0 series are aimed at twelve-year-olds with a reading age of 9-10 years. They are around six thousand words in length, i.e. short story sized. But, to create interest and momentum, they are divided into several chapters (with cliff hangers), and then spread unthreateningly over 64 pages. The aim is to build reading muscles by creating works that are small in scale but big enough in content; mini novels if you like: do-able and hopefully un-put-downable.
The stories in the series cover many challenging themes and in all genres – from the trials of an apprentice apothecary escaping London during the Black Death of 1665 (Plague by David Orme) to Jill Atkins’ Cry, Baby which tells what happens when schoolgirl, Charlie, finds she is pregnant.
And where does Yum Kaax come in? Well he features in my story Stone Robbers, putting in a surprising appearance when Rico, the angry young hero of the tale, stumbles into a robber trench in an ancient Mayan city. But that’s all I’m saying, except to add that the part he plays in the story was inspired by the real and accidental discovery of a magnificent Mayan mural at San Bartolo, Guatemala back in 2001.
Stone Robbers, then, is both an adventure and a quest. Rico has a score to settle with an old adversary, Enzo. Then he discovers that antiquities thieves have been looting the ruined city near his home. Between Enzo and the stone robbers, lies yet another conflict: Rico’s fury at his Mayan heritage, this in a Guatemala where Mayan people are still second-class citizens. Suddenly it all seems too much to handle, and then the Corn God puts in an appearance…
Available on Amazon Kindle and on Amazon in book format.
Also in the Shades 2.0 Series Mantrap – a story about elephant poaching set in Zambia.
For more about Ransom and Shades 2.o series
17 thoughts on “Yum Kaax to the rescue? Or how to hook reluctant readers…”
thank you, Tish,
for digging in your treasures
as an author!
Yum Kax (Yoom Kosh)
the Mayan Corn God:
completely new for me.
I worshipped Pegasus
instead – without any effect.
Ah, Pegasus. Thanks for reminding me, Frizz (and for your comments). I have a story brewing about a flying horse. They are good things to believe in. Up, up and away…
I share with you the delight in succeeding to bring reluctant readers into the club.
Children can be great story tellers. I used to love writing out their words from a recording for them to read as if it was a real book, which of course it was.
You have awakened part of me…thanks.
You’re most welcome, Tony. There really is a huge need on the literacy front, and not just children but adults too. And all over the world of course. Go to it!
Sounds like interesting, adventuresome stories – hopefully, it will encourage young (reluctant) readers to want more…
Are those the same underground Mayan frescoes that were featured in Nat’l Geographic? They were beautiful.
The shades 2.0 series sounds interesting. And if those frescoes were any inspiration, I’m sure they’re great.
Yes, Stephen, it was exactly the frescoes featured in Nat Geographic. The Peabody Museum then funded the further expeditions.
I used those photos for collages. They were really something special.
keep on writing 2014, Tish!
Thanks for all your encouragement in 2013, Frizz. You really spurred me on. Cheers and all the best for 2014.
Thank you for introducing the book, Tish! I look forward to reading it.
Lovely post Tish and yes, the young ones should read more. When I was younger I would have lived in the library if they let me. LOL! I still like reading but with the age comes the diminishing eyesight and if books weren’t so expensive I would have kept on buying them. I would love an ebook reader that I can take outside or when I am lying on my bed as it’s no fun sitting here at the desktop pc reading my ebooks. Maybe one day. 😀 Thanks for sharing hon. *hugs*
Thanks so much for calling in, Sonel. Can recommend e-readers, and of course they’re getting cheaper all the time. There are lots of free classics to download, and the readers are so much easier to hold than a book when you’re lying down. And you can change the font size!
My pleasure Tish and I totally agree, especially where the font size is concerned and of course, less trees have to be cut down. 😀
Good for you Tish, and congratulations on your success!
Thanks, Tina. Your comments are much appreciated.